This is the story of the present Cathedral Church and Parish, of its building and its history, but most of all of the Living Stones from which God continues to create it.

The Archbishops

Scant reference only will be made, either to the more detailed history of the church in what was once Rhodesia, or to our parish in years before 1925.

It is, however, proper to acknowledge briefly the existence of two former parish buildings, a chapel and a church, built on what became Dominican ground to the west of Forth street. It is even more important to realize the nature of the parish in its early years and how it has changed. The European Catholic presence was first established in Bulawayo which remained the true centre of the Church in Rhodesia (now Zimbabwe) until 1927, when it shifted to Salisbury (now Harare). Our parish, too, was established in the service of European settlers. Missionary activity among the indigenous population, of course, predates both, and St Peter’s Mbare was built in 1910, a parish for Africans in an African township.

Sacred Heart Cathedral

Front view nowadays

View from S. V. Muzenda Street (formerly Fourth Street)

The Cathedral standing tall at the corner of S. V. Muzenda Street and Herbert Chitepo Avenue

Sacred Heart Cathedral

Inside view nowadays

The work of caring for Europen settlers was in the early years shared by Bulawayo and Salisbury, and parish boundaries remained largely undefined. The priests who served them established Mass centres in remoter parts, where White Catholics were more numerous. The establishment of Mission Stations, too, provided an increasing service.

The establishment of Salisbury Vicariate in 1931 enabled a more coherent allocation of responsibilities. The Cathedral Parish of the Sacred Heart had by the beginning of Second World War effectively shrunk to an area best described as greater Salisbury. It shrank to its present size by the establishment of new peripheral parishes in the fifties and sixties.

Sacred Heart Cathedral had three Archbishops:
Archbishop Aston Ignatius Chichester SJ
Archbishop Francis William Markall
Archbishop Patrick Fani Chakaipa

Archbishop Aston Ignatius Chichester SJ

Archbishop Aston Ignatius Chichester was the first archbishop of Salisbury, having served as Vicar Apostolic. Archbishop Chichester SJ founded the Chishawasha seminary and the indigenous women’s congregation in Zimbabwe, the Little Children of Our Blessed Lady (LCBL sisters).

Archbishop Chichester retired in 1956, and in 1962 in Rome while attending the second Vatican council, and was buried Rome.

The remains of Archbishop Chichester were later brought to Zimbabwe in March 2009.

Archbishop Francis William Markall

Archbishop of Salisbury Rhodesia (now Harare, Zimbabwe) from 1956 to 1976 when he retired as Archbishop. He retired on 31st May 1976 and died on 9 August 1992. Archbishop Markall was a council father at second Vatican Council.

“For I know the plans I have for you, plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future…”

declares the LORD

The Gate Entrance

The Cathedral faces the west overlooking the Dominican Convent School, and on the left abuts The Catholic Centre. There are 3 entrances into the church yard in the front as follows.

Middle Entrance

This is the main entrance to the churchyard, with a statue of our Lord Jesus Christ on the cross, and on the right entrance there is statue of “our Lady” and on the left entrance Statue of “our Lord Jesus Christ with arms open stretched.

Sacred Heart Cathedral

Middle entrance

Front-view of the church wall

On the front wall there are statues of Ss Peter and Paul, St Peter holding a key which is a symbol of papal authority (Mathew: 16 vs 19)and St Paul with a book  representing his gospels in the New Testament.

Why Statues of St. Peter and Paul

To remind of those who handed over the faith which we celebrate today now [sacred tradition].

There is a notice board on both sides and one can know of events taking place, weddings banns, Readers’ choir roaster for both masses, flower roaster and those who want to donate flowers on a particular date can do so by submitting their names and contact details on the roaster.

Inside the Church

There are sacred images to help and prepare people to pray at the back and on the right side.

Cathedral of the Sacred Heart

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Cathedral of the Sacred Heart
4th Street, Harare, HA, Zimbabwe

Contact Us

Parish Office +2 6386 8300 0153
Administrator +2 6377 3403 539
Annointing of The Sick +2 6377 3625 168

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